what's the easiest way to start a list for a beginner ?

Based on my readings, I visualize two main strategies for list building:

At one end, you treat subscribers like humans or friends. You try to be recognized as an expert and you sell either your own products or high quality affiliate products. You progressively upsell with high value products such as coaching, private forums/memberships, seminars...

At the other end, you treat subscribers like numbers.
You flood them with numerous offers for a large variety of affiliate products or CPA products. You multiply pop up windows, and you probably sell solo ads to your competitors.
Statistical considerations (conversion) are of prime importance as well as sub-segmenting your list based on subscriber behavior. This strategy probably emphasizes immediate payback to cover the cost of building the list.

The other strategies probably fall between these two extremes.

I wonder what's the easiest way to start for a complete newbie ?